#TheList Farhad Khalil Ahmed of Lydney, Gloucestershire GL15 – carried out illegal slaughter of a male sheep
Ahmed, owner of Lydney Hand Car Wash, Newerne Street, Lydney GL15 5RF, was convicted under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 with causing unnecessary suffering to a ram.
Ahmed admitted to being filmed cutting a ram’s throat as an accomplice helped him restrain the animal. The video, originally obtained by Caerphilly Trading Standards officers in an unrelated investigation, was passed to Gloucestershire Trading Standards who interviewed Ahmed for offences under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
Ahmed entered a guilty plea and was convicted of a single offence of causing unnecessary suffering to the ram under Section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
Cllr Dave Norman, cabinet member for public protection said “I would like to congratulate our Trading Standards Animal Health Team for bringing this offender to justice. This animal clearly suffered a horrific death at the hand of this person and his accomplices.”
“Our Trading Standards team work to ensure the strict welfare standards for farm animals are followed at all times.”
Sentencing: 12-month community order with 150 hours of unpaid work. Ordered to pay the full prosecution costs of £1,700 and an £85 victim surcharge.
#TheList former company director William G Woodward, born 18/01/1986, of Redhouse Farm, Catesby, Daventry NN11 6LW and employees Artur Lewandowski, born c. 1984, of Ribble Drive, Darlington DL1, Kabeer Hussain, born c. 1964, of 58 Brantwood Road, Bradford BD9 6QA, and Kazam Hussain, born c. 1973, of 179 Haworth Road, Bradford BD9 6NT – caused suffering to sheep as they were killed
Abattoir boss William Woodward and slaughtermen Artur Lewandowski, Kabeer Hussain and Kazam Hussain admitted causing unnecessary suffering to animals after secret footage of halal killing showed workers HACKING and SAWING at sheep’s throats. The secret filming by Animal Aid also showed sheep being kicked in the head and hurled into metal walls.
The footage was passed on to the Food Standards Agency.
Howard Shaw, prosecuting for the CPS on behalf of Defra, told the court the footage revealed, “a large number of sheep were caused to suffer unnecessarily”.
Under the halal code, animals are supposed to be killed quickly, with a single sweep of a surgically-sharp knife. They should not see the knife before they are slaughtered, or witness the death of other animals.
But the Animal Aid video revealed how many of those practices were being flouted.
Its secretly installed spy cameras showed staff taunting the animals, waving knives in front of them, smacking them on the head and shouting at them.
The halal code also states that animals be allowed to lose consciousness for 30 seconds before being moved on to the next stage of slaughter in a bid to minimise suffering.
But footage showed slaughtermen Kazam Hussain and Kabir Hussain waiting between one and 11 seconds before the animals were sent on to be strung up by their back legs on the processing line, still conscious.
Animal Aid footage played to the court showed at one point Kazam and Kabir dancing and singing as they killed the sheep.
The footage also showed conveyor belt operator, Artur Lewandowski picking a sheep up by its fleece at the neck and at one point pulling his fist back as if to punch a sheep which was resisting, as it was sent towards the area where they were killed.
Mr Shaw told the court: “There’s one incident where the sheep is struggling. He draws back his fist in a punching motion but doesn’t actually punch the sheep.
“He almost throws the animal on to the conveyor belt by its fleece.”
The court heard that the two slaughtermen were professionally qualified and licensed and killed the sheep in accordance with regulations on halal slaughter when watched by the on-site vet, Pedro Benitez.
But Mr Benitez had witnessed animals being given less than 20 seconds to lose consciousness the previous year on the abattoir’s CCTV system and raised his concerns with director William Woodward.
Mr Woodward’s response was to accuse him of “spying” and lodge a complaint against Mr Benitez with the Food Standards Agency. He also refused to allow him further access to the room where the CCTV monitor was situated.
The undercover footage by Animal Aid provoked a national uproar, sparking protests outside the premises and condemnation from the Muslim Council of Britain.
The Government has now introduced legislation that makes CCTV mandatory in slaughterhouses.
In sentencing, District Judge Marie Mallon told former director Woodward: “It was your business. The suffering was extreme, and it wasn’t an isolated incident.”
Sentencing: William Woodward – 20-week suspended prison sentence; ordered to pay £5,080 towards prosecution costs.
Artur Lewandowski – 150 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay costs of £160.